A decision by Union Pacific Railroad to restrict parking along its right-of-way on Euclid Avenue in Millwood has led to a change by the Millwood Farmers Market.
“That was a main area where people would park for the market,” said the Rev. Craig Goodwin of Millwood Presbyterian Church.
Instead of being held in the parking lot of the church, the city agreed to close Marguerite Road between Euclid and Dalton avenues. Vendors set up their wares in the street for the market on Wednesday.
“We’re calling it an experiment,” Goodwin said.
This is the market’s eighth season. Vendors come to sell their wares and community members come to meet the people who grew their vegetables or baked their bread, as well as meet their neighbors for some fun and live music.
Goodwin said a couple hundred people a week usually come, depending on the weather.
On Wednesday, vendors in the new spot seemed to like the change.
“It’s very nice,” said Tamara Milliken of Companion Coffee. “It’s much more shady with the trees.”
Cindy Noble at the Millwood Artisans’ table said she likes being closer to the other vendors so they can have a chance to chat with each other as well as their customers.
“I love it,” Noble said. “It’s a little more cozy.”
Ed Hedding at Country Buddies Old Fashioned Canning Company said Wednesday was the first time he had set up his stall in Millwood.
He sells homemade salsa and a peanut brittle his wife makes from a recipe that’s been in her family for five generations.
“(Business has been) very good for early afternoon,” he said not long after the market opened for the day.
The Scone Ranger, also known as David Ainley, used to sell at Spokane Public Market in downtown Spokane and has brought his baked goods to Millwood. He also was enjoying the shade.
“I like it,” he said. “These trees keep things cool.”
For Gabriel Macias, co-owner of Pacific Produce from Wapato, Washington, said the shade helps keep his produce looking fresh. In the parking lot, their booth was getting direct sunlight.
May Cotton, a member of the church, said she tries to make it to the market every week.
“I like that I know the merchants,” she said. She loves to meet new people, running into friends, and the fresh food she can get. She liked the new location, too.
But for her, the market is a way for her as a member to get outside the four walls of the church and connect with the community.
“It’s not all about coming to the church,” she said. “It’s community.”